He sat on the park bench so depressed-looking that a policeman tried to console him. ‘Something the matter?’ ‘Yeah,’ he replied. ‘A few months ago my grandfather left me £500,000 and some oil wells.’ The policeman responded, ‘That doesn’t sound like something to be upset over.’ ‘Yeah, but you haven’t heard the whole story. Last month my uncle left me £1,000,000.’ The policeman shook his head. ‘I don’t get it. Why are you so unhappy?’ He replied, ‘So far this month, nobody’s left me anything.’
Seriously, the man in the story is part of a group of people who are unhappy no matter what they have. The psalmist shows us how to overcome an ungrateful attitude by cultivating a spirit of thanksgiving. ‘Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.’
Thinking and thanking go hand-in-hand. Memory is a catalyst for worship. An old hymn declares, ‘Count your blessings, name them one by one…see what God has done.’
The psalmist encourages us to do three things: first, think about what God has given us – His forgiveness, healing, protection, redemption, love, and compassion (see vv. 1-5).
Second, think about what God has not given us – the punishment our sins deserve (see vv. 8-12).
Third, think about what God is yet going to give us. ‘From everlasting to everlasting the LORD’s love is with those who fear him’ (v. 17 NIV 2011 Edition).
God accepts you when you trust in Christ’s performance, not your own. So each morning look in the mirror and say, ‘Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.’
‘Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.’ Psalm 103:2 KJV